Wednesday, January 30, 2008

My Shabbaton To Buffalo, Part 1

There's so much to talk about. In a nutshell, it was awesome, and I returned tired and extremely sore. You would be also if you were on a bus for 16 hours, went skiing for three, and slept on a floor (cold and hard, of course, I wouldn't have it any other way) for three nights. THREE!!
But it was a lot of fun. I've never gone skiing before, so naturally I thought I would be a...natural.
Well, I wasn't. I started off on the bunny slope, which let me tell you, it's harder to go up then come down. You had to hang to this rope thingee which pulled you up, and I fell twice. I wanted to see what the easiest normal slope was, one level up from bunny. I saw it. And freaked. It was this giant huge steep slope! I was really nervous, and I asked an instructor what I needed in order to safely ski down. He said I needed to know how to turn and stop. The two hardest things of skiing. (The easiest being falling.)
So I went down the bunny slope around five times before I gained a teensy bit of confidence. Then I went up the chairlift! And it didn't stop. It kept going up. And up. And up. They should really make points in the middle where you can chicken out. And when I got to the top, I found it really hard to leave. No, I wasn't emotionally attached to my chairlift, or at least I won't admit to it, but it tilts you out of your seat to start skiing immediately. Of course I fell flat on my face, and they had to stop the whole chairlift until I could untangle myself from my own skis. That's what's so annoying about falling, your skis are so awkward and it's really hard to pick yourself back up.
But of course, that didn't discourage me, and I skied on with my friend, looking for signs for the easy slopes, with the green circle. Now Easy, Medium, and Hard, or green, blue and black, or circle, square and diamond (everyone has heard of the black diamond slopes) don't necessarily mean they are hardest. It's just black diamond are the steepest, so you can go the fastest, which could be easier than maneuvering around all the turns of an intermediate one. So we went following signs to the easiest slopes, and I found skiing to be really fun.
Until we somehow managed to find ourselves on the brink of a fantastically steep and suicidal black diamond slope. We looked at each other, and there was one way down. We started making as many turns down the slope, trying not to pick up speed. But the slope's snow wasn't so compacted, and it was snowing like crazy in our eyes which made it hard to see and did I mention it was my first time? And we both crashed and fell midway down the mountain. Not a fun experience.
I was going to call it quits, but we decided to try again. This time an intermediate slope. And it turned out to be really fun. There was this one turn, which I didn't make so well, and I almost fell off a cliff and off like the whole mountain, but baruch hashem I didn't. But it was scarily close.
Then at the end of this particular slope, there was a long, steep hill down to the bottom, which I picked up a ton of speed. It was so cool, because it was blizzarding, the snow was flying in my face, all I could see was white, and I was whipping down at really high speeds.
The only bad part about skiing is twisting my ankle. Twisting your ankle. Twisting one's ankle. Whatever. It happened to me, I'm not sure when. But I found out how much it hurt after I took my boots off and tried walking. When I took my equipment off, I couldn't feel my fingers, they were so frozen. And my toes were so frozen and cold, I thought I must have some ice somehow in my sock. I took off my sock and realized what I thought was ice were just more toes of mine, frozen numb.
It was all really awesome, and I was the first in my family to ski. If you knew my family, you wouldn't be surprised.